World’s first US-Australia biofuel flight takes off

First QANTAS Boeing 787-9, delivered on October 17, 2017

QANTAS Airways issued this statement today:

The world’s first dedicated biofuel flight between the United States and Australia, flight QF96 from Los Angeles to Melbourne, departed last night.

The historic trans-Pacific 15 hour flight operated with approximately 24,000kg of blended biofuel, saving 18,000kg in carbon emissions.

QANTAS will use biofuel processed from Brassica Carinata, a non-food, industrial type of mustard seed, developed by Canadian-based agricultural-technology company, Agrisoma Biosciences (Agrisoma).

The flight is part of the partnership announced in 2017 which will also see the companies work with Australian farmers to grow the country’s first commercial aviation biofuel seed crop by 2020.

QANTAS International CEO Alison Webster said it was fitting that the airline’s game-changing Dreamliner 787-9 will showcase the future of sustainable aviation.

 

Across its lifecycle, using Carinata-derived biofuel can reduce carbon emissions by eighty percent compared to traditional jet fuel.

The ten percent biofuel blend used on today’s flight will therefore see a seven percent reduction in emissions on this route compared to normal operations.

Carinita requires no specialized production or processing techniques. It is water efficient and The University of Queensland field trials in Gatton, Queensland, and in Bordertown, South Australia, have demonstrated it should do very well in the Australian climate.

It is sown in either fallow areas where food crops fail or in between regular crop cycles, known as “cover cropping”.  Rotational or break-crops can improve soil quality, reduce erosion for food crops and provide farmers with additional income.

 

QANTAS’ first trans-Pacific biofuel flight was made possible with the support of AltAir Fuels and World Fuel Services.

QF96 departed LAX on Sunday, January 28 and arrive in Melbourne on January 30 (local time).

In 2012 QANTAS and Jetstar operated Australia’s first biofuel trial flights. QANTAS’ A330 Sydney-Adelaide return service and Jetstar’s A320 Melbourne-Hobart return service were both powered with biofuel derived from used cooking oil (split with 50:50 convential jet fuel) certified for use in commercial aviation.

Tio Copyright Photo (all others by QANTAS): QANTAS Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZNA (msn 39038) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 940396.

QANTAS Airways aircraft slide show:

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